Injuries have so ravaged the Yankees this season that they’ve even interfered with their farm system. Outfielder Estevan Florial, arguably the best prospect in the organization, returned last week after missing the first two months of the season due to a non-displaced wrist fracture. Florial had also missed considerable time in 2018 after undergoing surgery on the same wrist.
While Florial’s past two seasons haven’t gone according to plan, he’s an important piece of the puzzle as it pertains to their potential deadline plans. His name has littered trade talks in the past, and he figures to serve as one of the top asks by other teams heading into the deadline.
What makes Florial so intriguing is that he has the chance to develop into a superstar-caliber player. He can run, he can field, and he can throw. The question with Florial — well, besides whether his body will oblige — is how much will he hit?
Florial has the raw traits to become a good hitter, including the necessary bat speed and strength. His approach at the plate could use some refinement, however, as last season he struck out in more than a quarter of his plate appearances without offering much pop.
Florial has missed considerable time over the last year, and that makes projecting him more difficult. If he can make the necessary adjustments, it’s possible he’s a five-tool center fielder; if not, he’s still likely to contribute at the big-league level, just not to the same extent.
The Yankees and those teams interested in acquiring Florial will have to figure out how they project him in the coming weeks. Depending on where everyone falls, he could be one of the biggest names worth watching heading into the deadline.
For a look at, check out our colleague Scott White’s take.
Now, onto the Watch.